In 1293 Newbattle Abbey received a charter of lands in the area of Stenhousemuir
“et vtilitate molendini fui del Stanhus quotiuxa furnu’ [m?] Arthuri infra baroniam de Dunypas”
which translates as
“and the use of our mill of Stenhouse which is beside Arthur’s O’on within the barony of Dunipace.”
Clearly this royal mill was already in existence at this early date. At the time this small parcel of land was part of the huge barony of Herbertshire, otherwise known as Dunipace. It later became the baronial mill for the smaller barony of Stenhouse.
The mill is mentioned again in 1601. Infamously, the amazing Roman monument known as Arthur’s O’on was demolished by Sir Michael Bruce in 1743 so that its stones could be used to repair the dam across the River Carron. John Melvin “a mulcherer and merechant” held a tack of the mill in the 1750s and brought shipments of grain up the River Carron for storage in the mill buildings. It was said that the granaries and lofts of Stenhouse Mill could hold over 300 bolls of oats and 300 bolls of wheat. Peat was also delivered by water for use at the mill.
The mill may have been one of the reasons why the partners of the Carron Company chose the site for their new ironworks in 1759. The water supply had to be guaranteed for the mill. Sir Michael Bruce sold his :
“Mills of Stenhouse, & Shealling hills, belonging thereto, kills millers houses, and pertinents, with the whole sucken multures, knaveship, and other dues payable by the tennants, vassal & others of the Barony of Stenhouse…”
to Francis Garbett and Charles Gascoigne in 1766. They in turn passed them on to Carron Company in 1771. The mill was turned into a forge c1773. The wheel pit was widened and a dividing wall placed along its centre so that it could take two wheels. That on the south worked the forge and the other a turning mill. The first edition Ordnance Survey in 1860 still shows the site occupied by a forge.
The site of the mill lay just to the south of the modern roundabout that serves the roads to Carronshore, Falkirk, Stenhouse and Antonshill.
Sites and Monuments Record
|Stenhousemuir Mill||SMR 1032||NS 8825 8263|